The academy’s careers programme aims to raise the aspirations, improve motivation, promote equality of opportunity, celebrate diversity, challenge stereotypes and prepare learners for their future careers.
It strives to raise self-esteem, inspiring students to consider a broad and ambitious range of options and to move on to achieve their full potential. Easterside Academy career-related learning aims to provide cultural capital; overcoming barriers to success and equip students with the confidence, knowledge, transferrable skills and attributes that they need to make informed decisions about their learning and work; encouraging pupils to aim higher.
All forms of stereotyping will be challenged to ensure students from all backgrounds, gender and diversity groups, and those with SEND, can consider the widest possible range of careers.
The curriculum aims to involve parents as well as the wider community and world of work; it is underpinned by British Values, PSHE and Character Development.
- The careers curriculum is carefully planned to ensure there is continuity and progression of opportunities, responsibilities and experiences. It has four pillars or building blocks: Participation, Learning, Leadership and Service.
- Career-related learning is embedded in the curriculum through cross-curricular links in addition to more explicit ‘career’ lessons/experiences.
- The careers curriculum incorporates two main concepts:
1. Development of desirable skills and qualities to equip children for their futures in education and word of work. Throughout the career-related curriculum, each child has regular opportunities to identify and develop personal skills and qualities in relation to friendship, roles within school, family, local and wider community.
2. Raising awareness of the possibilities in terms of education and world of work. To ensure progression and continuity each phase has a particular career focus:
- EYS, the focus is child-centred; exploring the world of work through role play, reinforcing skills and qualities in key worker groups, outings to the local farm, shops, library and care home.
- Key Stage 1, children concentrate on roles within the school and the Emergency Services.
- Year 3/4 children focus on jobs/roles within the local community including the NHS.
- Year 5/6 pupils develop an understanding of the wider world of work through enterprise experiences, visitors from various employers and ex-pupils and visits to industry /places of work.
- Links with Further Education are developed to raise aspirations; pupils have opportunities to visit local colleges and the university. Colleagues from FE also support with activities in school.
- A transition programme for secondary school is carefully planned for Year 6 pupils to prepare them for the next phase of their education.
Year 6 ‘job’ application process-aim to provide ‘authentic audiences' and ‘real experiences’ relating to the job application process, for example Year 6 pupils when applying for their whole school monitor roles are required to: refer to job bulletin board, select a suitable job to apply for taking into consideration their own interests, skills and qualities. They then write a formal letter of application, attend an interview led by a school governor and member of the Senior Leadership Team. Once they are successful, monitors are presented with a contract of employment. Pupils are expected to attend training sessions before commencing their roles. ‘Employees’ then have an appraisal with their ‘employer’ to discuss performance in their ‘job’; aspects of the role that were particularly enjoyable, any issues and how they were resolved, what skill pupils gained from their role, further training needs and aspirations for the future.
Links with STEM/ /NCCE /CAS are intrinsic to the careers curriculum; ensuring appropriate, engaging activities in school involving STEM ambassadors to raise awareness of careers in science, technology, engineering and maths. Enrichments such as The Goblin G2 kit car project has enabled children to work with a STEM ambassador and Cummins engineer. Involvement in the Tees Valley Careers Pilot, Children Challenging Industry and Middlesbrough Football Club Careers Programme have provided additional opportunities for pupils.
Children have the chance to learn about the democratic process through elections and roles within school such as; School Council, Rotakids, Head starters, RPMs, School Ambassadors and Eco Warriors. Children have close links with the local councillor and involved in improving their local environment.
Involvement with the Rotary Club provides opportunities to develop a range of desirable skills. Rotakids participate in regular for meetings with Rotary Club members, officers are appointed and committees are formed based on pupils’ interests, age and skills. Rotakids, in association with the Rotary Club, plan and host events for sections of the local community, such as the Senior Citizens. Pupils support with fund raising for Rotary Club charities too-such as eradicating polio across the globe.
Enterprise is planned throughout the school. Children decide on how best to spend a class budget. School Council members are involved with Pop up shops to raise money for charity. KS1 children have the opportunity to set up and run a museum shop. The Fiver Challenge enables pupils to be entrepreneurs, raising funds for the leaver’s trip at the end of the year.
Close links with a school in Gambia enables children to develop an understand of the wider world, the valuable work of volunteers and the important role the academy has in supporting schools in a different country. Children are involved in fund raising, sending ‘care packages’ and letter writing to pen pals in Gambia.
The academy provides opportunities for individual/small groups of children to make request regarding careers - related opportunities- eg a visit to Central library took place to enhance the role of school librarians. Furthermore, Student Council members are provided with an opportunity to visit the Town Hall and take part in a debate within its chambers.
Easterside Academy reinforces the qualities and skills associated with specific areas of the curriculum- children learn how to be ‘historians’, ‘scientists’, ‘coders’, ‘authors’, and so on.
Every opportunity is made for children to gain an insight into the jobs of any visitor speaking to the children- career ‘journey’, qualifications, what the role entails -pros and cons. This is also the case when children go out on any school visit.
Y6 pupils ‘graduate’ from Easterside Academy in a special ceremony in which they reflect on their primary school life and ambitions for the future before transition to secondary school.
The crucial role of parents/carers is recognised when delivering career-related learning. Through parental surveys, involvement in school events and opportunities for parents/carers to attend courses arranged by academy’s ‘Parental Engage Team’, it is felt that this will lead to a raised awareness of parents/carers role in supporting their childrens’ futures.
Easterside Academy’s ‘hall mark of success’ is that pupils will leave the school with an understanding of who they can become and a healthy sense of self which will enable them to reach their full potential. Pupils will have the confidence, knowledge, skills and attributes that they need to make informed decisions about their learning and work; encouraging pupils to aim higher.